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16 Powerful Ways to Expand Your Life This Year

acorns into oaks

 by Jim Cathcart

1. Define your future.
Describe the life you’d like to live. The future you see defines the person you’ll need to be. Identify the traits and qualities you’d like to acquire. Think bigger than yourself. An acorn that only thinks as an acorn will never become a mighty oak. Stretch yourself. You are undoubtedly capable of more than you ever dreamed is possible for you.

2. Become the person who would achieve your goals.
As you develop the skills, knowledge, relationships and demeanor of the ‘future you,’ your goals will be the natural byproduct of your growth. Become a magnet for the future you desire. Spend an extra hour each day in the study of your chosen field.

3. Give more than you must.
Nothing advances until somebody does more than they are paid to do. Always deliver more value than others expect. Don’t require others to acknowledge your generosity. Give with ‘class.’ Receive without forgetting and Give without remembering.

4. Make time for what you love.
If you don’t live fully, you deny the world your potential contributions. Your ‘play’ sometimes contributes as much as your ‘work.’ What you love reveals the value you bring to the world.

5. Refine your Inner Circle.
We define ourselves through our key relationships. Explore the mix and depth of those with whom you spend most of your time. Release those who limit you and connect with those who can help you live more fully. Determine who you need to know and go shopping for new relationship connections.

6. Resolve your unfinished business.
Either deal with it or discard it. Say your apologies, face your fears, pay your debts, express your gratitude and get on with living. Don’t let yesterday drain value from today and tomorrow. Break out of the limited world of your past and start to grow.

7. Rethink existing habits and routines.
Describe your typical day and then reconsider every aspect of it. Change or expand the places you go, people you see, things you do, and the time you devote to each. Try new things. Learn a new language, go someplace different, do some things you’d typically pass by. Find out what your possibilities really are.

8. Lighten up.
Stop stressing over things that only matter to you emotionally. When life isn’t fair to you, get over it quickly. Take your misfortunes as ‘course corrections’ rather than ‘catastrophes.’ Let go so you can grow.

9. Tighten up.
Sloppiness in life allows more variables to creep in and spoil your plans. Stay on target, increase your self-discipline, master the art of self-motivation. Sometimes details matter a lot.

10. Profile yourself.
Keep a journal of your goals, concerns, fears, and dreams. Review it at least once a year. Look for patterns that reveal your core values, natural velocity, natural intelligences and recurring situations. Realize how life ebbs and flows for you. Notice the natural cycles of life. Know yourself.

11. Invest in yourself.
Set aside a portion of each year’s income to acquire new tools and teachers to increase your potential. Refine your systems, get expert coaching, attend special conferences, cultivate a study group, appoint a board of advisors. You are your only true asset. Send part of today ahead to the person you’ll be in the future.

12. Know what to stop doing.

Determine which of your habits and routines are not serving you well. Discontinue them. Replace the tools that are taking you too long to use; software, subscription services, etc. Spend your time on the things that advance your life.

13. Select the habits you need.

Identify the habits that high achievers have that you don’t currently have. Determine to spend a bit of time each day doing these new things until they become unbreakable success habits for you.

14. Live your life more intentionally. 

Examine the percentage of each day that you live because you decided to live it that way vs the percentage that you spend doing whatever pops up. Decide in advance how much time and effort to commit to the things that you care about.

15. Keep your success metrics visible. 

Things that are measured tend to improve. Decide now what you want to keep track of. Create a dashboard for yourself on paper on in an App that will keep you conscious of just how well or poorly you are doing in each of the areas that matter to you. Winners keep score!

16. Do More! Get outside, go to new places, drive new roads, study new sources. Increase the amount of living you do.

And a bonus idea: Express your gratitude daily in as many ways as you can. A grateful heart is a success magnet. People love to be around others who appreciate people and blessings. Be glad (out loud) about what you see, have, do and become. Show others what you appreciate about them too.

Use this list as a discussion or brainstorming tool. Take one item at a time and apply it to your life. Live Abundantly, we need what you bring to the world.

Copyright 2009 & 2015 Jim Cathcart, http://cathcart.com

Jim Cathcart